Remove IcePick.exe: LifeCam Live Messenger on "Call Button" Solution

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Tutorials' started by Mike, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    On almost every version of the "Microsoft Lifecam" web camera, there is a call button on the device. The device is usually very small, and upon hitting the call button, you will have a program launched over and over again, in quite an annoying fashion, which can never be closed, called "IcePick.Exe". This program insists that you install Windows Live Messenger in order to use the camera. Wait a second, didn't you buy a webcam to use it for whatever program you damn well pleased? Well, perhaps this was not a priority for this model of webcams, unfortunately. The IcePick.exe file is named that for a reason: it is a complete nightmare to turn off - even killing it in the Task Manager does nothing.

    So egregious is this scenario, that even using Microsoft's own Expression software will not allow you to disable the IcePick.exe nightmare.

    The only solution not to be promoted to install Windows Live Messenger every 2 seconds, with no option to close the window whatsoever? Some old school cracking, that's how!

    Assuming 64-bit Windows, use (x86) after Program Files... read on..

    1. Open an elevated cmd.exe prompt (admin) by going to Start -> Run -> cmd.exe and right-click "Run as administrator"
    2. Under the command-line cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft LifeCam"
    3. rename IcePick.exe IcePick.bak
    4. Have Skype? Your favorite program? Find the path and make a symlink. Heres an example for Skype: mklink IcePick.exe "C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe"
    Yes, just like in Linux, there are now symlinks (symbolic links) in Windows. This allows you to run a program like Skype from a place it normally wouldn't be (and in fact isn't). You'll see this message:

    Code:
    symbolic link created for IcePick.exe <<===>> C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe
    Now you won't get hammered with this web cam debacle. No other web cam seller plays this game on their customers except Microsoft. This had led me to the question many times, "Why didn't I just go with a Logitech?" Unfortunately, sometimes, MS is not too good. This is bad news for the LifeCam series. Whomever developed it did not want to play nice with 99.9% of all other video capture software! At least by linking it to a program like Skype, if that program is already opened, you will not get killed with Microsoft's literal "IcePick"
     
  2. Spadger

    Spadger New Member

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    Sounds too complicated to me: but I've found the solution to the problem: unplug the sodding thing and only plug it in when wanted.
     
  3. Patrick J Higgins

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    Greetings Mike,
    I recently resurrected my VX-5000 to enable me to "Skype" the Grandchildren and I found that I had this unwanted "feature" as Microsoft would call it. I 'Googled' and your very helpful and easy to follow post was #3 result. Problem solved, thank you, I am very grateful.
    This begs the question "Why did this happen in 2015?"
    Four years have passed since Microsoft acquired Skype, it was last week that I plugged in the LifeCam into a PC that it had never before been connected to. It seems to me that there must be some kind of "hard-wired-phone-home" jiggery-pokery going on, as the LifeCam software was offered and installed without a disk, (I was hoping to just install drivers, and use it as I wished... Silly me!) How is it that Microsoft have not addressed this yet, given that they are rolling out (pushing) Skype via 'MS Update" these days, have they just forgotten about it? Any ideas?
    Thank you once again for the solution, I'm so glad to have found the forum, I signed up today initially just to say "Thank You" to you, but I'm sure that the forum will become an invaluable resource to me in the future.
    Best wishes,
    Patrick
     
  4. whychicken123

    whychicken123 New Member

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    Thanks, correct things I need
     
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  5. BinaryDNA

    BinaryDNA Member

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    I recently did a video on how to change what the button does on a LifeCam. My was for a HD-5000, but it should be a similiar experience for others. Using the batch method, you can have the button do whatever you want. Play music, start video game, capture a picture, or all three. Check it out here at
     
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